I find myself stunned to read polls last week holding Republicans more responsible for the debt ceiling crisis than Democrats. This speaks to the President’s ability to lie well, and to deceive Americans, and his ability to leverage his friends in the press to his benefit. Consider the following:
1. The only major player in this debt debate that hasn’t put forth a concrete plan is the President himself. He speaks in platitudes and adjectives, with no specifics. We have a Republican budget, we have a Gang of Six budget, we have a Deficit Commission budget, a “Cut, Cap, and Balance” budget passed by the House, and of course the Ryan Plan. But all we have are vague platitudes from the President.
2. Douglas Elmendorf, the head of the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office, was asked to score the President’s budget. Since the closest thing we’ve seen to a budget from the President was the “framework” he proposed on April 13th, Elmendorf said “We don’t estimate speeches. We need much more specificity than was provided in that speech for us to do our analysis.”
3. The President has spoken of outrageous tax loop holes that need to be closed, such as the infamous, 12-times stated in his press conference, “tax breaks for corporate jets”. I have a question for the President. Why, when he had a super-majority in the Senate and a huge majority in the House, did he and the Democrats not plug these loopholes? Why didn’t they raise the debt ceiling? Why didn’t they take action to reduce government spending (As the President now says is something we “obviously” need to do. If it was so obvious, why didn’t he fix it then?) while they had these majorities?
Here we are facing the most dire financial crisis in our lifetimes, and a financial calamity beyond anything we have experienced with a potential U.S. default, and the President has not put forth a plan! And make no mistake, while many contributed to putting us in this position, the President and the Democrats controlled our government for 2 years prior to this (and both houses of Congress 2 years before that), and they have us completely out of position and now in a desperate situation.